Programs for Tennessee Communities

Humanities Tennessee conducts and supports public humanities programming across the state. We provide opportunities for Tennesseans to engage with our state’s diverse stories – found in literature, history, arts and culture – to encourage critical thinking and civility. We also work with museums and community organizations to strengthen the infrastructure of Tennessee’s cultural institutions. Together through our programs, grants, collaborations, and media partnerships, we provide approximately 500,000 Tennesseans with humanities resources, content, and programming each year.


Chapter 16

(Statewide) Chapter 16 is a daily online publication that provides comprehensive coverage of Tennessee authors, literary news, and public readings; it also serves as the state’s virtual Center for the Book.

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Neighborhood Story Project

(Statewide) This initiative enables Tennessee residents to research and share the histories–and have a voice in the future–of the places they call home.

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Southern Festival of Books

(Nashville) Founded in 1989, the Southern Festival of Books is an annual, three-day Celebration of the Written Word – known nationwide as one of the leading literary celebrations – that features national, regional, and local authors, booksellers, publishers, and performers.

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Student Reader Day

(Statewide) Student Reader Day brings writers into schools for presentations and provides free books for young readers to inspire critical thinking, lively discussion, and a lifelong love of reading.

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Tennessee Association of Museums Scholarships

(Statewide) Since 2003, Humanities Tennessee has offered scholarships for volunteers of small or emerging organizations to attend the Tennessee Association of Museums’ annual conference.

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TN Writers | TN Stories

(Nashville) TN Writers | TN Stories is a program in partnership with the Tennessee State Museum, Vanderbilt University Press, and Humanities Tennessee. It provides audiences with an opportunity to hear from Tennessee writers about their books. This is a free series hosted at the Digital Learning Center in the TN State Museum.

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Traveling Exhibits

(Statewide) Humanities Tennessee facilitates statewide tours of traveling exhibitions from the Smithsonian’s Museum on Main Street program, as well as smaller, state-specific exhibits.

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United We Stand

Humanities Tennessee (HT) has received $50,000 as part of the National Endowment for the Humanities’ “United We Stand: Connecting Through Culture” initiative which awarded $2.8 million nationwide. HT’s focus with this programming during 2023-2024, our 50th anniversary year, is to explore Tennessee’s collective imagination as a tool shaping a safer, more just civic life in which all Tennesseans belong.

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Young Writers’ Workshops

(Johnson City) The Tennessee Young Writers’ Workshop is summer residential program presented in partnership with East Tennessee State University for aspiring young writers to work directly with published authors to embolden creative writing skills.

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